Monday, October 21, 2013

Another week starts. Smog--again. Pollution as Carcinogen.

As you could see yesterday I didn't see much to comment on and I didn't do much, anything actually, in the gardens.  It is wet outside now and we expect a wintery mix of rain and snow tomorrow so I may not get anything done till Wednesday.

I read too much politics, also, Kay.  I have tried to get away from some of it.  The idiocy is simply--I have run out of suitable adjectives.  I will let you all fill in the gap.

Bill Moyers had an interesting program yesterday.  I especially liked the interview with Sherry Turkel centered on her new book Alone Together.  She writes about how technology has affected our behavior and our interactions with real people.  We seem to have a lower tolerance for boredom because we always have our smart phones and can shift away from what is happening in our immediate  physical area.  And we have lost the distinction between solitude and loneliness.  I may pick up her book--not yet though.  I have a number of books in my queue.  But I have noticed that we here are somewhat out of step with modern culture.  We don't have smart phones and have no intention of getting one.  Though we can access the web on our phones we don't--by choice.  Nor do we play games on them.  We don't watch movies on our lap-top computers and don't want to.  We don't text much to the annoyance of our hipper relatives.  Like Turkel, I wonder where it is all going and what it will mean for us as humans.

This seems to have become an all too frequent story in China.  It was also a lead story on Al Jazeera today.  We saw it and responded "Well, duh!!  They are between a rock and a hard place.  They have a large population that is moving at a fast clip onto the cities.  They need power for both consumers and industry.  Where do they get it?"

Evidently, at least according to the U.N., the pollution can be ranked with asbestos as a cancer causing agent.  Green Prophet has bit on the report.  The report got a scant mention in our news media over the weekend.

I am not at all surprised at this development.  I am somewhat surprised at the outrage expressed by those who made an unwarranted assumption based on Obama's assurance that "they could keep their insurance plans if they liked them."  After all, insurance is a business transaction meaning that there has to be a seller and a buyer.  The buyer assumed that because he wanted to continue buying the seller would continue to sell.  Another "Well, duh!" moment.  I am bemused by the political response to the snafus involved in the Obamacare enrollment while there has been absolutely no outrage over insurance companies canceling policies whole sale.

Here is something both surprising and shocking.  Once living creatures turned to stone.

Here is an interesting article that sheds some light on how the civil war in Syria might end based on how such wars have ended over the past 70+ years.  The chance of a negotiated settlement, as Obama has advocated, is about as good as the proverbial snowball in that proverbial very hot place.

This raises waste to the level of immorality.  War is a waste no matter which way you look at it.  But a war fought for no good reason against any kind of common sense magnifies the waste.  I think we should follow the old rule for backcountry hikers--what you take in, you take out.  I am really amused by the Afghan attitude: they are being cheated.

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